"By thinking about the finitude of life, one must start to live more consciously and waste less time."
Translated literally, 'Memento mori' means 'remember you will die'. While this may seem haunting, the meaning isn't morbid, but rather an encouragement to honour and remember those who have passed before by living our own lives to the fullest.
The one thing that unites us all, no matter our background, is the fact that we will all die. It's a truth that we all know, yet many of us are scared to face it head-on. This fear of mortality is what inspired the ancient practice of 'Memento mori', which encourages us to reflect on our mortality and use it as a tool to make the most of each moment and enjoy the journey.
The essence of 'Memento mori' is to use the certainty of death as an opportunity to gain perspective and prioritize our lives. It's not about being depressed or scared, but rather about recognizing the preciousness of life and not wasting it on trivial things.
'Memento mori' has gone from being a primarily religious reminder to live a life of virtue to a modern-day version of 'Carpe diem' - a call to make the most of life while you can.
Modern society tends to shy away from thoughts or discussions of death, but it's a part of life that can't be ignored. In our culture, we focus on staying young and acting as if nothing will ever change, but the truth is, life doesn't last forever. We must all accept that death is inevitable and use it as an opportunity to appreciate our time on earth.
'Memento mori' reminds us that every day that we are alive is a special occasion - so live your life accordingly. Take the trip. Use the 'good' towels. Wear the fancy shirt. Tell everyone you love them.